The New Nigeria People’s Party (NNPP) has pointed fingers at former presidential candidate Rabiu Kwankwaso, alleging that he is responsible for the party’s loss in the Kano Governorship Election Petitions Tribunal. The NNPP claims that Kwankwaso betrayed the party by aligning with the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) in pursuit of a ministerial position in a potential government led by President Bola Tinubu.
The Kano State Governorship Election Petitions Tribunal recently nullified the victory of Yusuf Abba, declaring APC’s Nasir Gawuna as the winner of the March 18 governorship poll. The tribunal also revoked Abba’s Certificate of Return, citing irregularities in the margin of votes scored by NNPP, which they deemed non-compliant with the 2022 electoral act. The tribunal deducted 165,663 votes from NNPP, citing issues like unstamped or unsigned ballot papers.
Responding to the outcome, Alhaji Abass Akande Onilewura, a prominent NNPP figure in the Southwest, released a statement to the media on Thursday. He asserted that the party’s loss in Kano can be traced back to allegations of Kwankwaso’s anti-party activities.
Onilewura highlighted that Kwankwaso’s purported involvement in undermining the party’s internal processes, including the selection of governorship candidates, resulted in the nomination of candidates who lacked popularity or acceptance among voters.
He added, “This loss is a big one for us at NNPP and it only happened because of the selfishness of Kwankwaso who sold the party to the highest bidder.
“While we are still waiting for the Certified True Copy of the tribunal judgment, it is important for the world to know that this would not have happened if Kwankwaso had allowed due process and given the ticket to the most qualified candidate but his inlaw.
“Our investigation also showed that the continuous engagement of Kwankwaso with APC at some point gave room for them to discover loopholes which were later used against the Kano governor to secure victory for the opposition.
“It is unfortunate that some of us sweat to get the party to where it is today, only for someone like Kwankwaso to come and make all our efforts a waste. We are happy that someone like that has been expelled from this great party.
“We also want to use the avenue to warn him to stay clear of NNPP, we don’t want a betrayal in our party and we would do anything humanly possible to secure our party from hijackers who are more concerned about personal gain.
“I will also urge our members across the country to remain calm because a new leadership has taken over the party and we would do everything to restore the glory of our party. NNPP will come out to become a strong voice and opposition that would stand for justice, equity, and good governance.”